Ingrid is a worrier. I also used to be, although I’ve worked hard at letting go, and I worry much less than I used to.

High on her list of worries: Making the wrong choice that she later regrets – especially when she has to choose between joining the rest of us for an activity or staying at home. Not getting good grades. The looming responsibilities of adult life. Dying. Family and relatives dying. Wasting her day. Wasting her life.

What can a mother do?

Give the child a book on philosophy. William Irvine’s A Guide to the Good Life. I bought it for myself but hadn’t yet gotten around to reading it.